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Membership in the KC

**Copied from KC Supreme's website**

Learn About Us

Thanks to the efforts of Father Michael J. McGivney, assistant pastor of St. Mary’s Church in New Haven and some of his parishioners, the Connecticut state legislature on March 29, 1882, officially chartered the Knights of Columbus as a fraternal benefit society. The Order is still true to its founding principles of charity, unity and fraternity.

The Knights was formed to render financial aid to members and their families. Mutual aid and assistance are offered to sick, disabled and needy members and their families. Social and intellectual fellowship is promoted among members and their families through educational, charitable, religious, social welfare, war relief and public relief works.

The history of the Order shows how the foresight of Father Michael J. McGivney, whose cause for sainthood is being investigated by the Vatican, brought about what has become the world's foremost Catholic fraternal benefit society. The Order has helped families obtain economic security and stability through its life insurance, annuity and long-term care programs, and has contributed time and energy worldwide to service in communities.

The Knights of Columbus has grown from several members in one council to more than 15,100 councils and 1.9 million members throughout the United States, Canada, the Philippines, Mexico, Poland, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Panama, the Bahamas, the Virgin Islands, Cuba, Guatemala, Guam, Saipan, Lithuania, Ukraine, and South Korea.

Our Principles

All the good works we do are informed by our four core principles:

Charity - Our Catholic faith teaches us to “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” Members of the Knights of Columbus show love for their neighbors by conducting food drives and donating the food to local soup kitchens and food pantries, by volunteering at Special Olympics, and by supporting, both spiritually and materially, mothers who choose life for their babies. Knights recognize that our mission, and our faith in God, compels us to action. There is no better way to experience love and compassion than by helping those in need, a call we answer every day.

Unity – None of us is as good as all of us. Members of the Knights of Columbus all know that – together – we can accomplish far more than any of us could individually. So we stick together…we support one another. That doesn’t mean that we always agree or that there is never a difference of opinion. It does mean that – as a Knight of Columbus – you can count on the support and encouragement of your brother Knights as you work to make life better in your parish and community.

Fraternity – The Venerable Michael J. McGivney founded the Knights of Columbus, in large part, to provide assistance to the widows and children left behind when the family breadwinner died – often prematurely. The Order’s top-rated insurance program continues to do this today, as do individual Knights, who last year gave more than 10 million hours of their time to assist sick and/or disabled members and their families. In the Knights of Columbus, we watch out for and take care of one another.

Patriotism – Members of the Knights of Columbus, be they Americans, Canadians, Mexicans, Cubans, Filipinos, Poles, or Dominicans, are patriotic citizens. We are proud of our devotion to God and country, and believe in standing up for both. Whether it’s in public or private, the Knights remind the world that Catholics support their nations and are amongst the greatest citizens.

Our Ethics

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Reflecting the moral teachings of the Catholic Church and upholding the core principles of Charity, Unity, Fraternity, and Patriotism in its good works, the Order makes ethics an essential commitment to its business client relationships.

This commitment to ethical leadership has been recognized in the business community when the Knights of Columbus was named a 2015 World’s Most Ethical Company® by Ethisphere Institute, a global leader in defining and advancing the standards of ethical business practices. The Order received the same award in 2014, when it was one of only two companies to receive the honor in the life insurance category.

"For more than 130 years, the Knights of Columbus has been protecting the financial future of Catholic families and providing charity to those on the margins of society,” said Knights of Columbus CEO Carl Anderson. “That founding principle of helping those in need is at work in every aspect of our business, guiding our corporate governance, our professional agency force, our investments, and our day-to-day business operations. It is this continued commitment to our foundational, Catholic principles that is the key to our ethical, sustainable and successful business model.”

The Knights of Columbus’ principles of Charity, Unity, Fraternity and Patriotism serve as the basis of the Order’s core values which are Integrity, Professionalism, Excellence, and Respect. Internally, the Order abides by a Code of Ethics and Conduct that demonstrates how the core values guide employees and contractors in difficult situations.

“At the Knights of Columbus, our values influence more than just our investments too. They also inform every aspect of our business, from the way we conduct our business, to the way we sell our products and treat our employees,” Supreme Knight Anderson said in his remarks at the Sustainable Investments Conference in Chicago in 2011. “Our marketing code of ethics is based on the Ten Commandments and our ‘Golden Rule’ requires our sales agents to pledge to those they serve the same standards they would apply to themselves. In addition, we work hard to make sure that the same approach is applied to our employees by offering excellent benefits – including health care and a defined benefit pension – and by maintaining an excellent relationship with both our management and union employees.”

Why Join the Knights of Columbus?

If you’re interested in helping those in need, serving your parish, growing in your faith or having exclusive access to top-rated insurance protection for your family, then the Knights of Columbus is the organization for you.

Becoming a Knight of Columbus can transform your life. As a Knight, you have the opportunity to support your parish, give back to your community, grow in your faith and gain exclusive access to our top-rated insurance program to protect your family.

These are just some of the reasons to become a Knight.

We are a band of brothers, a network of men in communities around the world dedicated to doing good in the service of God and our neighbor.

What we provide

SERVICE

Charity is the first principle of the Knights of Columbus. Knights are men who get things done. We volunteer our time to serve our parishes and our communities. And by working together, we were able to donate more than $1.4 billion and 664 million volunteer hours to worthy causes in the past decade.

SUPPORT

Unity and Fraternity are the second and third principles of the Knights of Columbus. The Knights of Columbus was founded so that men could work together to serve their parishes and communities, protect the well being of their Catholic families, and support each other in faith and in many other ways along life’s journey. The Knights of Columbus offers its members the opportunity to grow in their faith through living the example of a charity that evangelizes and personifying what it means to be a Catholic gentleman through the practicing of good works.

STABILITY

As a Knight, you and your family have exclusive access to our top quality insurance products. In fact, no insurer in North America is more highly rated than the Knights of Columbus. As an organization founded to protect the well being of Catholic families, we have continued to take that mission seriously for more than 130 years. Generations of Catholics have counted on the Knights of Columbus, and in an increasingly turbulent world, you can trust the Knights of Columbus to affordably and securely protect the future of your loved ones and to be there when you need us most.

For 130 years the Knights of Columbus has provided all of the opportunities in this brochure and more for its members.

The Knights of Columbus is not just a fraternity in name. It is a brotherhood of Catholic men who each play a part in improving the world around them, one community at a time. They stand together in faith, dedicated to uphold the principles they cherish while lending their support and strength to parish, home and fellow Knight.

From charity for worldwide causes, to helping closer to home with volunteer activities, to a top-rated insurance program that protects those closest to you, the Knights makes the most of its brotherhood.

Make a stand among them, and you can discover how easy it is to make a difference in your life and that of others.

Types of Membership

Catholic men 18 years of age or older who join the Knights belong to a council, or local unit. Many 18 to 22 year olds first join the Knights of Columbus in a college council. Membership in the Knights of Columbus is open to men 18 years of age or older who are practical (that is, practicing) Catholics in union with the Holy See. This means that an applicant or member accepts the teaching authority of the Catholic Church on matters of faith and morals, aspires to live in accord with the precepts of the Catholic Church, and is in good standing in the Catholic Church.

Members who are over 18 years of age; a citizen of the country in which he resides; a Third Degree member in good standing; and a practical Catholic in union with the Holy See are eligible to join the Fourth Degree Knights.

The Knights of Columbus also sponsors the Columbian Squires, a service and leadership training organization for Catholic young men ages 10 to 18 years old.

How to Join

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If you are a practical Catholic man, age 18 or older, we welcome you to join the leading organization of Catholic laymen.

Being a Knight is more than camaraderie; it is being involved with your community; it is supporting your local Catholic Church, while enhancing your own faith; it is about protecting and enhancing your family life. Come see just what we are all about and take the first steps to enhance your personal life.

Applicants must apply to their local council located at a parish. Blaine/Coon Rapids Council 5141, is located at Saint Timothy's Church, in Blaine, MN.

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